- The Washington Times - Monday, December 20, 2004

CHILE

Appeals court backs Pinochet indictment

SANTIAGO — An appeals court yesterday upheld the indictment and house arrest of Gen. Augusto Pinochet on human rights charges.

A panel of the Santiago Court of Appeals voted 3-0 to uphold the indictment, Judge Juan Escobar said. The ruling is expected to be appealed to the Supreme Court. It came as Gen. Pinochet, 89, recovered at the Santiago Army Hospital from a stroke.

By Sunday, the former dictator had recovered consciousness and mobility, doctors said. Gen. Pinochet was indicted a week ago by Judge Juan Guzman, who charged him with nine kidnappings and one homicide during his 1973-90 rule. The indictment was part of Judge Guzman’s investigation into Operation Condor, a plan coordinated by military dictatorships.

HAITI

Rebel chief targets interim government

PORT-AU-PRINCE — A Haitian rebel leader has called on ex-soldiers, who helped oust President Jean-Bertrand Aristide this year, to undertake a guerrilla war to unseat the interim government that replaced him.

The call Saturday came a day after the government asked U.N. troops to remove rebels who occupied Mr. Aristide’s former home and called it their new headquarters.

“We called on former military from across the country to organize a guerrilla warfare to give a response to the government,” said Remissainthes Ravix, self-proclaimed commander of the former military, which took over the Aristide compound Thursday.

COLOMBIA

Plan to assassinate president is foiled

BOGOTA — Police said Sunday they found more than 300 pounds of explosives in the coastal city of Cartagena that rebels planned to use to assassinate President Alvaro Uribe.

Two suspected members of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) were arrested in the raids, police said. It was the second time in four days that police announced they had foiled a plot to kill the president, who has survived several assassination attempts including a rocket attack as he was being inaugurated in 2002.

Weekly notes

Peru’s state investigator against corruption, who angered President Alejandro Toledo by seeking to pursue charges of graft by the current administration, told a press conference Friday his contract had not been renewed. “The decision is made. It’s not that I’m choosing to leave, I’m not. I’ve been told my services are no longer required. Fine, I’ll go,” said state attorney Luis Vargas, in the job since 2002. … Canadian Prime Minister Paul Martin became the latest in a parade of world leaders to meet Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi Sunday as the North African nation cements its emergence from diplomatic isolation. Mr. Martin was expected to use his two-day visit to push for a liberalization of Libya’s economy and make a strong pitch for Canadian business.

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